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A soon to launch Kickstarter looking to launch soon, and is aimed at making 360 photography much simpler for most businesses. The initiative is by Photo Factory 360 and they’re calling it the X1 Pro. It’s aimed at small business owners that more or less don’t want to pay for a professional photographer to do something like this. In fact, they state that the X1 Pro enables you to do this stuff “for less than 1/10th the cost of other professional solutions.” They’re emphasizing that you can do it with nearly any camera or a smartphone.

But what they don’t flat out mention is all the post-production work that goes into something like this to prevent reflections, purple fringing, or even the knowledge of how to actually manipulate the settings needed to shoot photos like this–but that is evident to the trained eye. However, this alluded to where they state “An often overlooked fact about photography, is the inability of the average person to distinguish high quality from professional quality.”

If that’s clear to your business and your customers, then this shouldn’t be a problem. But if you’re selling something like beautiful mason jars, then you don’t want reflections.

The system is also very low tech–citing that it was work with systems as far back as a Pentium 4 processor and Windows 7. Sorry Mac users, it doesn’t say anything about you guys.

A couple of examples of what can be done are after the jump.

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Review: COVR Photo

by Julius Motal on 01/28/2015

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Here at The Phoblographer, we get plenty of emails from folks with ideas for ways to trick out your phone in order to help it take better photographs. These ideas almost always come with a Kickstarter link attached. Yet, most are variations on things that already exist. What you see above is the first item that made us take a step back and say, “There’s something there.” The case resting on top of my iPhone 5 is called the COVR Photo, the brainchild of Thomas Hurst, a Seattle-based photojournalist with a wealth of experience. The COVR Photo is a case designed for the iPhone 5/5S, with a 6/6+ one in the works, that has a prism lens for making iPhone photography a little more candid. Essentially, you can hold the phone like you do when you text, but you can make a photograph of whatever’s in front of you.

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julius motal the phoblographer orangemonkie Foldio 2

The folks at Orangemonkie are back with Foldio2 “Bigger & Smarter” on Kickstarter. We originally wrote about them a year ago when they debuted the original Foldio. Essentially, it’s a collapsible photo studio with LED lights that will help you take better product photography with either your phone or your camera. The original Foldio came in at 10.2 in. x 10.2 in. x 10.2 in. This time around, the Foldio2 is 15 in. x 15 in. x 15 in., which can accommodate bigger items.

The Foldio2 comes with three backdrop options: white, black and grey. The LED strips are also longer than the original, which provides much more light. The Orangemonkie team is also developing a smartphone to provide quick and easy editing for any photographs you take in the Foldio2.

This is definitely a boon for anyone looking to take better product photos or experiment with macro photography. Hopefully, eBay listings will look a little better, too, if this has a high adoption rate.

They’ve already blown past their $50,000 threshold, but if you’d like to get one early, head on over to their Kickstarter.

Product demo video after the jump. [click to continue…]

The Affordable 4x5 camera

The larger the format is that you’re working with, the more time it will surely take you to get a single image due to all the work that goes into it. And while large format cameras can be expensive, a duo from Europe are Kickstarting a more affordable camera. It’s called the Intrepid 4×5 camera, and it promises to be a light weight camera made from birch ply wood.

The Intrepid will take 75-300mm lens boards, has ground glass for focusing, comes with a choice of bellows colors, and folds down into a very compact size. With it being made from plywood though, I’d personally want it to be finished with a sealant of some sort to prevent moisture from affecting it too much in the long run. For the 125 Euro that they’re apparently charging for the camera though, we can’t really expect much.

It will take standard film cases for the image loading: which means that you can enjoy many of the offerings from Fujifilm, Kodak and Ilford still available for the format.

The intro video is after the jump, but be sure to head over to their Kickstarter page too to see the different rewards offered.

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Cams Pro Sling Strap Camera Plate and Lens Plate

A new Kickstarter is looking to solve a problem with photographers who like to shoot with vertical grips. They’re called CAMS, and they’re putting out the Pro Sling Strap.

The concept behind it is pretty simple: there are loads and loads of photographers who like to shoot with a vertical grip whether because it makes them look more pro or because of pure comfort. But indeed, many straps out there don’t always work so seamlessly with grips due to some sort of knob sticking out–and so you’ll often have to wrap your fingers around said knob. But the Cams Sling Strap offers a flat surface for use with a tripod collar or a tripod slot. This effectively lets you wrap your hand around the grip with less of an issue.

The units are made using aluminum and steel can can be used with either a lens tripod collar or a camera depending on what configuration you want to use. Then you’ll need to add the strap obviously.

It seems to otherwise work a lot like the BlackRapid straps–which is great for wedding photographers and photojournalists.

Their product video is after the jump.

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Lots of pitches and emails come our way everyday, but it’s rare that something truly pulls me out of bed from my afternoon nap. And for that, we have to give ti to the Bouncelite. The Bouncelite is a brand new Kickstarter initiative aimed at creating a completely brand new type of flash modifier that makes some of the most efficient use of lighting that we’ve seen. It mounts onto the head of your flash and acts as a softbox but can also act as a bounce card at the same time. At the moment, it’s currently being targeted at folks who put the flash in their hot shoe; though it can surely be used with the softbox off camera. But for what it’s worth, photographers who want to use a flash off camera go for much larger flash modifiers and larger softboxes.

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